Join The Conversation With Mishpacha's Weekly Newsletter



Costume and Custom

Leah Meisel

Masks, masquerades, mystery, and minhagim. All are components essential to the mystique of Purim. Over the centuries, a profusion of Purim minhagim has developed — each as unique as the community that boasts of it. Customs and costumes — these practices only add to the Purim celebration

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

It often seems that Purim is the longest holiday of the year. It lasts from Chanukah to Pesach — from the first hamentasch that appears in the stores right after the doughnuts finally leave, to the last gumdrop left from mishloach manos, surreptitiously swallowed before burning the chometz.

Inevitably, the longer the holiday, the more fascinating the customs relating to it. Beyond the requisite Purim mitzvos that all communities share, a wide range of original Purim minhagim abound, originating from all points of the globe.

The sources of many of these practices remain shrouded in mystery, the origins lost over the passing of time. Perhaps some of these traditions evolved due to the spirit of the day. Though evidence is not clear as to why we keep every individual custom, each community proudly and persistently preserves their individual minhagim as a genuine part of what characterizes Purim.

 

To read the rest of this story, please buy this issue of Mishpacha or sign up for a weekly subscription.

Share this page with a friend. Fill in the information below, and we'll email your friend a link to this page on your behalf.

Your name
Your email address
You friend's name
Your friend's email address
Please type the characters you see in the image into the box provided.
CAPTCHA
Message


MM217
 
Evolution vs. Revolution
Shoshana Friedman I call it the “what happened to my magazine?” response
Up, Up, and Away
Rabbi Moshe Grylak What a fraught subject Eretz Yisrael is, to this day
Where Do You Come From?
Yonoson Rosenblum Could they be IDF officers with no Jewish knowledge?
Heaven Help Us
Eytan Kobre Writing about anti-Semitism should rouse, not soothe
Work/Life Solutions with Chedva Kleinhandler
Moe Mernick “Failures are our compass to success”
An Un-Scientific Survey
Rabbi Emanuel Feldman Are Jerusalemites unfriendly? Not necessarily
Out of Anger
Jacob L. Freedman How Angry Lawyer was finally able to calm down
5 Things You Didn’t Know about…Yitzy Bald
Riki Goldstein He composed his first melody at eight years old
When the Floodgates of Song Open, You’re Never Too Old
Riki Goldstein Chazzan Pinchas Wolf was unknown until three years ago
Who Helped Advance These Popular Entertainers?
Riki Goldstein Unsung deeds that boosted performers into the limelight
Your Task? Ask
Faigy Peritzman A tangible legacy I want to pass on to my children
Are You There?
Sarah Chana Radcliffe Emotional withdrawal makes others feel lonely, abandoned
A Peace of a Whole
Rebbetzin Debbie Greenblatt Love shalom more than you love being right
Seminary Applications
Rabbi Zecharya Greenwald, as told to Ariella Schiller It’s just as hard for seminaries to reject you